The makers of Yorkshire Tea say they have spent the last three days dealing with angry social media users after Richmond MP Rishi Sunak posted a photo of himself making a brew.
The politician, who is the new Chancellor of the Exchequer after a Cabinet reshuffle earlier this month, tweeted on Friday that he was making tea for the team during a budget preparation meeting.
He added: “Nothing like a good Yorkshire brew.”
However, the tweet attracted an angry response from some who said they would be boycotting the brand from now on.
The twitter account of Yorkshire Team, which is made by Harrogate-based Taylors, attracted much of the flak from angry social media users.
Quick Budget prep break making tea for the team. Nothing like a good Yorkshire brew. pic.twitter.com/zhoQM9Ksho
— Rishi Sunak (@RishiSunak) February 21, 2020
And in an update tonight the company said the message they had received had been “pretty shocking”.
The company tweeted: “We’ve spent the last three days answering furious accusations and boycott calls. For some, our tea just being drunk by someone they don’t like means it’s forever tainted, and they’ve made sure we know it.
“It’s been pretty shocking to see the determination some have had to drag us into a political mudfight. But it’s been lovely to see others speak up for us – we’re so grateful to everyone who’s done that in a civil way (and gutted to see some use it as a reason for more nastiness).
“Speaking directly now, as the person who’s been answering these tweets, I know it could have been much worse. It’s easier to be on the receiving end of this as a brand than as an individual. There’s more emotional distance and I’ve had a team to support me when it got a bit much.
“But for anyone about to vent their rage online, even to a company – please remember there’s a human on the other end of it, and try to be kind.”
So it's been a rough weekend.
On Friday, the Chancellor shared a photo of our tea. Politicians do that sometimes (Jeremy Corbyn did it in 2017). We weren't asked or involved – and we said so the same day. Lots of people got angry with us all the same. pic.twitter.com/7uVmKDf7Jd
— Yorkshire Tea (@YorkshireTea) February 24, 2020
A spokesman for the MP declined to comment.